Kagawa does the heavy dramatic lifting in Tokyo Sonata, convincingly portraying a good man flailing against reality. As mentioned, it contains no supernatural elements, no ghosts, killers, or monstrous flora and fauna. Y et another of Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s chilling portraits of micro and macro alienation, Tokyo Sonata is a family drama as chillingly controlled and despondent as the horror films that gained him international recognition. Kiyoshi Kurosawa made his reputation with offbeat horror films like Cure and Pulse, which emphasized creeping dread over overt shock. There is the family, standard issue of father, mother and two children, and there are the roles: head of the family, respectful housewife, rebellious teenager and confused child. At times, Tokyo Sonata feels like a Bergman film: blond-wood interiors, classical-music soundtrack, family resentments ticking down to explosion. … It is terrifying because it is about us. Dramatic events occur that demonstrate how a routine, once broken, cannot easily be repaired. Notes Additional Physical Form: Also available on microfilm from the University of Florida. Perhaps he feels so inadequate he's threatened by any success involving his family. Review: Tokyo Sonata. for thematic elements and brief strong language, CW Reboots Walker but Forgets to Give Him a Personality, Something as Extraordinary as Birth Itself: Kornél Mundruczó and Kata Wéber on Pieces of a Woman, 10 Upcoming Films That Could Shake Up Oscar Season, Leslie Odom Jr., Aldis Hodge, Eli Goree, and Kingsley Ben-Adir on the Brotherhood of One Night in Miami. Tokyo Sonata centers on the Sasaki household, a middle-class family in Tokyo firmly entrenched in the stagnant routine of daily life. The lesson has to do with kindness and human interaction. 4 Min Read. 3:30 JAPANESE PRESS REVIEW - Japan's perspective on international issues in a program for Radio Japan 3:45 LONDON ECHO - a BBC magazine of the Arts . A film that effectively examines both the familial conflicts in Japan's transitioning society and the wondrous avenues each individual within the family explores. It is terrifying because it is about us. Kurosawa's first domestic drama is music to general audience's ears. In the opening scene, Ryuhei (Teruyuki Kagawa) is fired. His wife sees him there, knows everything, stays quiet. Ryūhei has a good office job, but is suddenly fired because Chinese workers are cheaper. Takashi (Yu Koyanagi) announces he has enlisted in the U.S. Army as a way to gain citizenship, as he sees no future for himself in Japan. The father, Ryuhei Sasaki (Teruyuki Kagawa), is a successful businessman who finds himself suddenly downsized as part of widespread company cutbacks. But underlining the conventional image of a family, is a broken bond; each struggling on their own. A highlight of the Cannes Film Fest, Tokyo Sonata should broaden Kurosawa's appeal in the U.S. Ryuhei is a salaryman in a management job. A skilful and continually surprising drama, Tokyo Sonata depicts the gradual deterioration of an ordinary Japanese family after its breadwinner loses his job owing to corporate downsizing. Tokyo Sonata (トウキョウソナタ, Tōkyō Sonata) is a 2008 Japanese film directed by Kiyoshi Kurosawa.It won the award for Best Film at the 3rd Asian Film Awards and received 2008 Asia Pacific Screen Awards nominations for Achievement in Directing and Best Screenplay. The "themes" in this movie are the father and his family. Unable to lose face by admitting his job loss, Ryuhei leaves "for the office" every day and lingers in a cheerless concrete oasis with other jobless men. Dates or Sequential Designation: Now, with Tokyo Sonata, Kurosawa has moved from not-quite-horror to not-quite-satire. Rated PG-13 The characters misplace their belief in etiquette, politesse, dignity, and propriety - or they struggle to maintain it. Debris has been cleared. Read full review There is a soup kitchen. But notice how Kurosawa (no relation the the great filmmaker) permits his train to leave the tracks. Get the freshest reviews, news, and more delivered right to your inbox! Japanese Reviews • Reviews Film Review: Tokyo Sonata (2008) by Kiyoshi Kurosawa. A sonata is a classical form in which two musical ideas are intercut. All you know about three-act structure is going to be useless in watching this film, even though, like many sonatas, it has three movements. But that's not what we're given by director Kiyoshi Kurosawa, best known for upscale horror films. Picture 9/10. Many men in Japan do the same, no big deal, but hypocrisy is the point. Roger Ebert was the film critic of the Chicago Sun-Times from 1967 until his death in 2013. Despite his reputation as a leading J-Horror auteur, Kiyoshi Kurosawa has tended to eschew the grisly thrills and spectral manifestations of his peers for a more diffuse atmosphere of mystery and dread. Kurosawa's film tells us a great deal about contemporary Japan without being overtly political. Simply a beginning. Tokyo Sonata shifts between various narratives of a family in turmoil, as each person struggles to find happiness and solace in what has become a life … and the Terms and Policies, By Genevieve Yue in the March-April 2009 Issue. Share This! Tokyo Sonata depicts a traditional family: father works, mother is a housewife and sons are studying. But Koizumi is similarly effective, and the brooding child actor Kai is also top-notch. Thank you, Mr. I admit that when I received the DVD in the mail I thought the title was "Tokyo Santa" so maybe anything would have been Direction and acting are workman like although Kurosawa has inserted numerous (sometimes subtitle) messages and philosophical points of view (both harrowing and humorous). His humiliation is underlined when all maintenance workers must change into one-piece coveralls at lockers in full view of passing customers. "Tokyo Sonata" is as good a chance as any to discover him. Though his latest to hit the American big screen, “Tokyo Sonata,” looks like a family melodrama — if a distinctly eccentric variant on the typical domestic affair — there is … The high-definition transfer is presented in 1080p. We are wrong. A skilful and continually surprising drama, Tokyo Sonata depicts the gradual deterioration of an ordinary Japanese family after its breadwinner loses his job owing to corporate downsizing. The Blu-ray disc is region free and will play in all Blu-ray players (or should anyways.) He is an autocratic father, filled with anger. Ed. Young Kenji (Kai Inowaki), no longer attending school, spends his money on piano lessons with the beautiful Kaneko (Haruka Igawa). REELING IS A PROUD MEMBER OF… Laura and Robin's reviews are also featured on Rotten Tomatoes , the Movie Review Query Engine , and the IMDB . Tokyo Sonata reminded me a little of two French movies about salaryman-delusion: Laurent Cantet's Time Out (2001) and Nicole Garcia's The Adversary (2002), both based on … At the 2008 Cannes Film Festival it won the Jury Prize of the Un Certain Regard section. Read More Please enter your email address and we will email you a new password. ... TOKYO SONATA is the story of the Sasakis, an average middle class family living in Tokyo. The entrance of a completely unexpected character results in an instinctive acceptance of the new situation, providing a sad payoff to what at first seems merely arbitrary. We analyze millions of used cars daily. Plot Tokyo Sonata is about a middle-class family in Tokyo, the Sasakis, which consists of Ryūhei Sasaki, his wife Megumi, and their two sons Takashi and Kenji. A horror film of a different sort from director Kiyoshi Kurosawa, who made his reputation as a "J-horror" director of intelligent supernatural thrillers ... Japanese horror maestro Kiyoshi Kurosawa applies his offbeat approach to the uniquely Japanese brand of dysfunctional family comedy in this droll satire. Review: Tokyo Sonata T okyo Sonata is yet another of Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s chilling portraits of micro and macro alienation, a family drama as chillingly controlled and despondent as the horror films that gained him international recognition. His father, breaking with the Japanese tradition of encouraging children to study, has already forbidden piano lessons. What we seem to have are the outlines of a traditional family drama, in which tensions are bottled up, revelations will occur and a crisis will result in either tragedy or resolution. His older son, Takashi, and younger son, Kenji, are filled with unhappiness but seemingly well-disciplined, although Kenji gets in trouble at school: The teacher unfairly blames him for passing along a manga, or graphic novel, and Kenji defiantly says he saw the teacher reading a porno manga on the train. Tokyo Sonata is the ultimate expression of this quality of Kurosawa's cinema. Noah Griffin’s review published on Letterboxd: Riffing on crippling conformity, dysfunctional family dynamics, and economic desperation, Tokyo Sonata is a film of a restrained, peculiar tone that varies from feeling like exaggerated satire to biting commentary. somei (A Kenji Sonata). The sonata has two sets of stars: actors and Tokyo venues (the latter may be both familiar and novel for frequent visitors to and, perhaps, residents of the city). Kagawa does the heavy dramatic lifting in Tokyo Sonata, convincingly portraying a good man flailing against reality. REELING IS A PROUD MEMBER OF… Laura and Robin's reviews are also featured on Rotten Tomatoes , the Movie Review Query Engine , and the IMDB . January 19, 2020. In the following sections, they are developed in passages revealing the secrets or potentials of both. Much like E1 Entertainment's presentation of Departures, Tokyo Sonata arrives in a 1.85:1 widescreen-enhanced image that grasps onto the film's visual tone nicely. An extended passage is held in a medium-long shot in which nobody moves, and the effect is uncanny. Eureka’s Masters of Cinema series presents Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s Tokyo Sonata in the aspect ratio of 1.85:1 on this dual-layer disc. There's a lesson in Tokyo Story. The conclusion does not resolve them; instead, we return to look at them, knowing what we know now. At the same time, Kurosawa observes the agony of unemployment in Japan, which, like the United States, has been beset by outsourcing to cheaper labor pools. Sign up here. Kurosawa's relaxed pacing and lack of concern for explaining every last thing will be a welcome relief if you've wearied of blockbusters... Director Kiyoshi Kurosawa cut his teeth on horror movies, and his flattened, formal style mines the horror in everyday urban life. Don't have an account? … As such, the appeal of “Tokyo Sonata” should translate to audiences anywhere who can identify with the family’s dilemma – and many will. Yet it is without doubt the most terrifying film Kiyoshi Kurosawa has ever made. Sidney Poitier’s 7 Most Memorable Performances, All Harry Potter Movies Ranked Worst to Best by Tomatometer. Ultimately, this may seem like a typical family where father works, mother nurtures and children study. Riffing on crippling conformity, dysfunctional family dynamics, and economic desperation, Tokyo Sonata is a film of a restrained, peculiar tone that varies from feeling like exaggerated satire to biting commentary. . Read, review and discuss the entire Tokyo sonata movie script by Kiyoshi Kurosawa on Scripts.com He finds work cleaning toilets in a shopping mall. Mr. Rudy was very generous with his time answering all my questions. Kyoko Koizumi, Kai Inowaki, Teruyuki Kagawa, and Yu Koyanagi portray a dysfunctional, middle-class Japanese family in director Kiypshi Kurosawa’s TOKYO SONATA. Old tapes have been destroyed. No, it doesn't turn into another horror film or a murder-suicide. Although I feel a slight dishonesty to Kurosawa's capabilities by even saying that as the man has proven even before this point his range as director with such superb films like Charisma and Bright Future and to receive email from Rotten Tomatoes and Fandango. At times, Tokyo Sonata feels like a Bergman film: blond-wood interiors, classical-music soundtrack, family resentments ticking down to explosion. Kurosawa is the rare director who simply lets his film dissolve into music, allowing the plot to take the film naturally to a musical conclusion. He has an encounter at work that is bizarre. Why? The sonata has two sets of stars: actors and Tokyo venues (the latter may be both familiar and novel for frequent visitors to and, perhaps, residents of the city). And then the film finds a form of release in another unexpected scene. Tokyo Sonata centers around the travails of the Sasaki family, beginning with the day that father Ryuhei (Kagawa Teruyuki) is laid off from his white collar position in favor of cheaper Chinese labor. Is there a happy ending? 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